“I don’t like the phone because my parents are on their phone every day,” wrote a Louisiana second grader in response to an assignment in which her class was tasked with describing something they wished was never invented. You may have seen the story that went viral earlier this year as a cutesy interlude on the evening news that the anchors laughed off as “something parents should think about.”
The time adults spend on their phones, and the effects it has on our children is no laughing matter. The Louisiana second grader gets it. She went on to write “A phone is sometimes a really bad habit. I hate my mom’s phone, and I wish she never had one.” Even more damning? Three other students in this elementary classroom agreed with similar responses.
The harsh truth is that our incessant phone usage — be it texting, scrolling through Instagram, or reading the news — is having a negative effect on our children in many ways.
LACK OF SOCIAL ATTACHMENT
Have you ever noticed that when you smile at a baby, she smiles back, and when you frown at her, she frowns? This is something Melanie Hempe, registered nurse and founder of Families Managing Media, describes as mirror neurons, and it’s crucial to a baby’s attachment to their parents and later social interaction with others.
“The only way babies can attach is to see our face,” Hempe&nbs